Thinking ahead I have prepared my son's 10th grade homeschool reading list.
I'm trying to be proactive and plan my children's reading list before school starts for once! The lists for my 8th and 5th graders are still unfinished, but here are the books my 10th grade soon will be reading this school year. It's a mix of fiction and non-fiction in a variety of subjects and genres that I compiled using recommendations from various high school reading lists and our own personal library. He won't necessarily be reading the books in this order.
The Sea Wolf by Jack London. Humphrey Van Weyden becomes an unwilling participant in a tense shipboard drama. A deranged and abusive sea captain perpetrates a shipboard atmosphere of increasing violence that ultimately boils into mutiny, shipwreck, and a desperate confrontation. This 1904 maritime classic depicts the clash of materialistic and idealistic cultures with a mixture of gritty realism and sublime lyricism.
Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe. Son of a middle-class Englishman, Robinson Crusoe takes to the sea to find adventure. And find it he does when on one of his voyages he is shipwrecked on a deserted South American island for thirty-five years. After scavenging his broken ship for useful items, he had only his skills and ingenuity to keep him alive as there was to be no one else on the island for the next twenty-four years. In the middle of that twenty-fourth year he rescued a native about to be eaten by cannibals who were using his island for a place of feasting. Crusoe named this man Friday, after the day of his rescue. Friday became his faithful servant and friend, even returning with him to England after their deliverance by an English ship.
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. 1906 bestseller shockingly reveals intolerable labor practices and unsanitary working conditions in the Chicago stockyards as it tells the brutally grim story of a Slavic family that emigrates to America full of optimism but soon descends into numbing poverty, moral degradation, and despair.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.
Deathworld Triology by Harry Harrison. A legendary science fiction story, this trilogy presents hero Jason dinAlt as he discovers three separate planets. dinAlt finds excitement and intrigue as he investigates Pyrrus, a strange place where all the beasts, plants, and natural elements are out to destroy man; the unknown second planet, where every man has to kill other men or live as a slave; and Felicity, where creatures are bred for thousands of years for a single deadly purpose. Well known to fantasy and science fiction enthusiasts, this tale portrays exciting adventures filled with the elements of classic characters and plot twists.
The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells. "No one would have believed in the last years of the 19th century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own…." So begins The War of the Worlds, the science fiction classic that first proposed the possibility that intelligent life exists on other planets. This spellbinding tale describes the Martian invasion of Earth. Following the landing in England of ten huge and indefatigable creatures, complete chaos erupts. Using their fiery heat rays and monstrous strength, the heartless aliens threaten the future existence of all life on Earth.
The Arabian Knights (not sure which version of these stories yet, however. Any suggestions?)
Almuric by Robert E. Howard. The creator of Conan looks to the stars in one of fantasy's most enduring science fantasy classics! Robert E. Howard's Almuric is a savage planet of crumbling stone ruins and debased, near-human inhabitants. Into this world comes Esau Cairn, Earthman, swordsman, murderer. Only he can overthrow the terrible devils that enslave Almuric, but to do so he must first defeat the inner demons that forced him to abandon Earth. Filled with vile beasts and thrilling adventure in the tradition of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Almuric is one of Howard's few novels, and an excellent yarn from one of America's most distinct literary voices.
The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier. Does Jerry Renault dare to disturb the universe? You wouldn't think that his refusal to sell chocolates during his school's fundraiser would create such a stir, but it does; it's as if the whole school comes apart at the seams. To some, Jerry is a hero, but to others, he becomes a scapegoat–a target for their pent-up hatred. And Jerry? He's just trying to stand up for what he believes, but perhaps there is no way for him to escape becoming a pawn in this game of control; students are pitted against other students, fighting for honor–or are they fighting for their lives?
Dragonsong by Anne McCaffrey. Dragonsong, the first volume in the series, is the enchanting tale of how Menolly of Half Circle Hold became Pern's first female Harper, and rediscovered the legendary fire lizards who helped to save her world.
Live from the Battlefield: From Vietnam to Bagdad by Peter Arnett. From his controversial coverage of Vietnam, which incurred the wrath of President Johnson but won him a Pulitzer Prize, to his unforgettable and daring on-the-ground reporting of the Gulf War during one of the greatest airborne assaults in history, Peter Arnett has established himself as the leading voice of American war reportage. In Live from the Battlefield, one of the most highly celebrated journalistic memoirs ever written, Peter Arnett gives us an engrossing account of the Vietnam era, as well as an indispensable portrait of battlefield reporting.
Live from the Battlefield captures the adventures, gambles, and glories that have marked this master journalist's life with a vividness and intelligence rare in any memoir. But more than that, Arnett provides an insider's view of some of the greatest and most tragic events of the century in a book of singular and enduring importance.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey. Being a teenager is both wonderful and challenging. In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, author Sean Covey applies the timeless principles of the 7 Habits to teens and the tough issues and life-changing decisions they face. In an entertaining style, Covey provides a step-by-step guide to help teens improve self-image, build friendships, resist peer pressure, achieve their goals, get along with their parents, and much more. In addition, this book is stuffed with cartoons, clever ideas, great quotes, and incredible stories about real teens from all over the world.
How to Lie with Statistics by Darrell Huff and Irving Geis. Darrell Huff runs the gamut of every popularly used type of statistic, probes such things as the sample study, the tabulation method, the interview technique, or the way results are derived from the figures, and points up the countless number of dodges which are used to fool rather than to inform.
Hiroshima by John Hersey. "At, exactly fifteen minutes past eight in the morning on August 6, 1945, Japanese time, at the moment when the atomic bomb flashed above Hiroshima, Miss Toshiko Sasaki, a clerk in the personnel department of the East Asia Tin Works, had just sat down at her place in the plant office and was turning her head to speak to the girl at the next desk." When the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, few could have anticipated its potential for devastation. Pulitzer prize-winning author John Hersey recorded the stories of Hiroshima residents shortly after the explosion and, in 1946, Hiroshima was published, giving the world first-hand accounts from people who had survived it. The words of Miss Sasaki, Dr. Fujii, Mrs. Nakamara, Father Kleinsorg, Dr. Sasaki, and the Reverend Tanimoto gave a face to the statistics that saturated the media and solicited an overwhelming public response. Whether you believe the bomb made the difference in the war or that it should never have been dropped, "Hiroshima" is a must read for all of us who live in the shadow of armed conflict.
Moon Shot by Alan Shepard, Deke Slayton, and Jay Barbree. The epic story of the golden years of American space exploration, told by the men who rode the rockets
How to Read a Person like a Book by Gerard I. Nierenberg, Henry H. Calero, and Gabriel Grayson. Imagine meeting someone for the first time and within minutes—without a word being said—having the ability to tell what that person is thinking. Magic? Not quite. Whether people are aware of it or not, their body movements clearly express their attitudes and motives, communicating key information that is invaluable in a range of situations. How to Read a Person Like a Book is designed to teach you how to interpret and reply to the nonverbal signals of business associates, friends, loved ones, and even strangers.
Personal, Career, and Financial Security by Richard J. Maybury. Uncle Eric introduces the concept of model. Models (or paradigms) are how people think; they are how we understand our world. Models help us recognize and use the information that is important and bypass that which is not. To achieve success in our careers, investments, and every other part of our lives, we need sound models. In this book, Mr. Maybury introduces the models he has found most useful (Economics and Higher Law). This is the first book in the Uncle Eric series and, while designed to stand alone, provides an excellent foundation for Maybury's other books.
The Thousand Year War in the Mideast by Richard J. Maybury and Jane A. Williams. "The Thousand Year War in the Mideast" explains how events on the other side of the world a thousand years ago can affect us more than events in our own hometowns today. The events of the Thousand Year War have been the cause of great shocks to our economy and investment markets, including: the oil embargoes, the Iranian hostage crisis, the Iraq-Kuwait war, and the Caucasus Wars over the Caspian Sea oil basin. These shocks are likely to remain so for decades to come. Learn about the Russians, Serbs, Croats, the Balkans, Kosovo, the Ottoman and Mongol empires, Turkey, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Indonesia, Russia, Oman, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Kurdistan, and more. Forewarned is forearmed. You must understand where this war is leading to manage your career, business and investments, as well as to reach an informed opinion regarding U.S. involvement in Mideast affairs.
World War I: The Rest of the Story and How It Affects You Today, 1870 to 1935 by Richard J. Maybury and Jane A. Williams. The explosion of the battleship Maine in Havana Harbor in 1898 was the beginning of a chain reaction that continues today. Mr. Maybury presents an idea-based explanation of the First World War. He focuses on the ideas and events that led to World War I, events during the war, and how they led to World War II. Includes the ten deadly ideas that lead to war.
World War II: The Rest of the Story and How It Affects You Today, 1930 to September 11, 2001 by Richard J. Maybury and Jane A. Williams. Mr. Maybury presents an idea-based explanation of the Second World War. He focuses on events in the Second World War and how our misunderstanding of this war led to America s subsequent wars, including the Korean and Vietnam Wars, the Iraq-Kuwait War, and the "war on terrorism" that began September 11, 2001.
This may not fit with the classes or subjects that you are teaching but this 10th grade homeschool reading list fits nicely into the curriculum we are teaching this year.
Elizabeth Ritchie says
Just as a heads-up – Have you read, "The Chocolate War?" My daughter was supposed to read it when she entered high school and I got about 20 pages into it and was shocked by the language and situations. We requested a different book and were given, "A Separate Peace" by John Knowles. It's a very similar story without the crudity. 🙂
thanks for posting this list! i have a 10th grader this fall who is an absolutely great reader, but he is totally unimpressed by "classical literature". he finds pretty much everything completely boring and dull, even if he's able to pick the title himself. i wish there was a way to make it more exciting – any ideas??? when i was his age, i remember thinking that Hemingway was so dull, i couldn't believe he was a celebrated author.
Thanks for sharing your list. I need to figure out what my 10th grader will read. I think the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens and probably The Hiding Place. Beyond that… I'm still trying to compile.
I think Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger is a good choice for a tenth grader. I remember reading it and it was great.